Author Archives: A Googler

Meet the top teams of Build For Digital India

In October 2019, Google and the Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology (MeitY), Govt. of India came together to launch the Build for Digital India - Student Developers Solve for India program. The aim of this initiative was to give Indian science, technology and engineering students a platform to become solution creators for the problems they see around them and their communities. Students were invited to build solutions on any of the following themes:

  1. Healthcare
  2. Agriculture
  3. Education
  4. Smart Cities & Infrastructure
  5. Mobility & Transportation
  6. Women Safety
  7. Digital India
  8. Environment & Sustainable Development Goals
  9. Accessibility & Disability
  10. Digital Literacy
  11. Others

Here’s a glimpse of the 6 month journey the students went through from October 2019 to June 2020:

    Application Phase: We received an overwhelming response from over 7000  students from more than a thousand universities in India

    Learn & Build Phase: To help the students build their prototypes, the students  received access to curated content across technologies like Mobile, Web, Machine Learning & Cloud. Topics such as Product Strategy, Marketing, UX were also covered along with  case studies of fellow changemakers that the teams could use to think through while building their working prototypes.

    Feedback Phase: We received 3000+ project submissions by teams & individuals for the feedback phase of the program. We shortlisted 61 projects to attend the in-person mentorship bootcamps across 4 cities in India. These students met with mentors for feedback on their progress and received  actionable insights to help them further improve their solutions.

    Final Pitch Event: Based on feedback shared by the mentors, we shortlisted the top 15 projects for the Build For Digital India pitch event.

    Due to the restrictions caused by COVID-19, we organized the entire pitch event online for the 15 finalists on 23rd June 2020. These finalists, who we supported closely for this process then pitched their solutions to a jury of entrepreneurs, Google teams and industry experts.

    Here are the top 3 teams that emerged from the Final Pitch event:

    1 : The Third Eye (Student team from MIT world Peace University, Maharashtra) ; Theme - Smart Cities & Infrastructure

    2 : Anukai Solutions (Student team from Chitkara University, Punjab) ; Theme - Smart Cities & Infrastructure

    3 : ISpeakFree.LY (Student team from Vishwakarma Institute of Technology, Maharashtra) ; Theme - Accessibility & Disability

    Congratulations to these student teams and to every student that participated in this 6-month journey. We are confident your entrepreneurial spirit and innovative solutions will help address areas that are core to India’s challenges. 

    We are also grateful to the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, Govt. of India for their partnership and encouragement in bringing the Digital India vision to life by supporting the student entrepreneur and tech ecosystem to build for a truly digital India. 

    Posted by Paul Ravindranath, Program Manager, Google India Developer Relations

    Ever wonder how YouTube works?

    YouTube has always been a place where people come to be informed, inspired, and delighted. Over the past few months, as our daily lives have changed in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, we’ve seen people turning to YouTube more than ever. As part of our ongoing commitment to transparency, we’ve created How YouTube Works a new website designed to answer the questions we most often receive about what we're doing to foster a responsible platform for our community, and explain our products and policies in detail. How YouTube Works will launch in the U.S. today with plans to launch in more countries over time, starting in mid-June.
    Answering the important questions
    How YouTube Works addresses some of the important questions we face every day about our platform involving topics such as child safety, harmful content, misinformation, and copyright, as well as tackling timely issues as they arise, like how we have responded to the COVID-19 crisis and how we support elections. Within the site, we explain how we apply our responsibility principles (the Four Rs) which work alongside our commitment to users’ security to tackle these important questions.

    Get to know our products and policies

    How YouTube Works provides an in-depth look at our products and settings, such as YouTube Search, Recommendations, privacy controls, and Ad Settings, showing how they help people have the best possible experience while they’re using YouTube. Additionally, users will find details of our policies like our Community Guidelines and monetization policies so everyone in the community knows what they can and can’t do on YouTube. We explain how our policies are developed and enforced in partnership with a wide range of external experts and Creators.

    Learn about the progress and impact we’ve made

    To show the progress we’ve made on managing harmful content, How YouTube Works includes facts and figures from our Community Guidelines Enforcement Report, which explain how and why we’ve removed videos recently.
    We also provide data, records, and current trends that have emerged on YouTube to help you better understand the next generation of Creators and artists. People can explore the stories behind some of YouTube’s creative entrepreneurs as well, and discover how they are transforming their lives and communities like Cheong Choon Ng, who built a thriving craft business; and Meredith Bell, who was able to realize her dream of becoming a farmer.
    How YouTube Works is an important part of our ongoing transparency efforts to ensure millions of users, creators, and artists can continue making YouTube a place to connect with others, learn about the world, and showcase their creative talents.
    Posted by Team YouTube

    Camp Google is now open

    Dear parents,
    The summer months have always reminded me of balmy days, of kids running around outdoors, and lazy spells of relaxing and reading their favourite books and playing games. But we are well aware of how these past months have upturned everything we’ve known about normalcy, with the lockdown being a central part of our lives since the onset of Coronavirus. These life changes have been profound, and the effect on our kids is more than ever -- their sense of familiarity has been jarred, with the reality of schools being closed, classes shifting online, and the summer break being curtailed.  I know as a mother, I have personally felt bad that I can’t give my twins Aarav and Saanvi the summer they work hard for all year.  While this is out of our hands, we all still wish to give our children something special.
    Which is why this year, along with a few friends and experts, we have created a very special program to help kids and their parents get excited about spending time together, by engaging in fun and learning experiences.
    We are very happy to bring you Camp Google 2020.
    At Camp Google 2020, we have a wide range of fun and engaging activities lined up for your kids: 
    • Craft an engaging story using one of our many tools -- for example, tell a wildlife tale using Augmented Reality animals in Search
    • Journey across India exploring the craft and traditions of our country on Google Arts & Culture
    • Learn about our country’s natural resources and how to preserve them on Google Earth
    • Get introduced to the world of programming, with Scratch (you don’t even need to write a single line of code!)
    • … and plenty more!
    There’s something new and exciting to learn every day.
    At the end of the camp, your child could also win the opportunity to attend a masterclass with the YouTubers themselves, have their prize-winning entries posted on Google India’s social handles, and get the best entry from the storytelling segment published in our Read Along app. 
    Beginning 1st July and over the course of the following two weeks, there will be five assignments that kids can access on the Camp Google 2020 website, and Google’s social media page, which will be accompanied by a set of instructions that will answer all your “how to” questions. Each of these assignments will also include elements that teach kids to stay safe online, with guidance on how to be a good digital citizen. We will also have sessions being conducted by leading experts in psychology, to help motivate the children and give them something to aspire to in these times. And remember: assignments can be submitted until 20th July, so make haste!
    We hope that the engaging activities we have lined up will bring back the excitement of summer for your kids, and help them develop skills and hobbies they can use all throughout the year. 
    Wishing you safe, fun, and memorable times together.

    Posted by Sapna Chadha, Senior Director of Marketing, Southeast Asia & India

    Helping small businesses to recover and emerge stronger with digital

    Helping small and medium businesses to go digital has been central to our efforts in India over the last several years. We have consistently invested in programs and solutions that remove the barriers that come in the way of small and medium businesses benefitting from the Internet. Just few years ago, over 68% of Indian SMBs had no digital presence*. Today, over 26 million Indian SMBs have built their web presence on Google Maps and are easily discoverable on Google Search. And every month we drive over 150M direct connections between these businesses and customers including calls, online reservations and direction requests.

    But the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and the ensuing lockdowns have accelerated the need for many more businesses, especially small and medium businesses, to adopt technology and “get online” to minimise the disruption and recover.  We recognize that recovery will come in different stages for different businesses. But we want to ensure that we are helping businesses make this journey, providing every business with the support and tools they need to recover and rebuild in this new environment.

    Today, we’re sharing an update on our programs and efforts in India to help small businesses make the transition to the digital economy, and empower them to rebuild for the new world. 

    To make it easier for the small businesses to discover all the Google resources, we are pleased to announce the launch of Grow with Google Small Business hub in India. This hub will serve as a single destination for all small businesses to get access to all the products and tools they need to go digital, maintain business continuity and get access to helpful resources like quick help videos, support pages to learn digital skills. We will soon make this site available in Hindi as well.

    Introducing new features to help small businesses find new customers:

    Google My Business:
    We have made important changes to  Google My Business to ensure that businesses are able to keep their customers updated about changes during this time. These include:

    • You can mark the business as temporarily closed or update the hours of operation, and also easily update on Google Search and Maps, once  the business reopens 
    • Select attributes that show customers  new ways by which the business is serving customers. For instance you  can select options such as  delivery, takeout, online services such as classes, appointments, or service fee estimates
    • Use the new COVID-19 post type to share more detailed and timely updates such as safety measures put in place such as curbside pickup, as well as  product and service availability

      Google Pay - Accept Digital Payments & let new customers discover you with Nearby Stores spot

      Google Pay for Business app helps millions of businesses accept contactless digital payments from their customers  everyday. Since its launch just 8 months ago, over 3 million businesses are now using it to accept and make payments digitally.  With the help of features like frictionless onboarding and video verification, any small business can easily adopt digital payments and start accepting payments easily and instantly.  We’re also working with our partner financial institutions to surface their loan offerings for merchants, which can be availed right within Google Pay for Business app, something that is especially pertinent in these uncertain times. We will make this offering  live soon. 

      Nearby Stores, a Spot launched on Google Pay last month, helps  local businesses get discovered by customers in their vicinity. We introduced this feature in May and starting today, we are expanding this offering to become available  across India. Additionally, merchant establishments can indicate their business hours, whether social distancing measures are in place at the store and the essential goods presently in stock. 

      Helping you stand out on Google Maps, for free

      Every month, over millions of people use Google Maps to see what’s around them, search for businesses, and find directions. Now, more than ever, consumers are looking to shop local, due to the convenience and to support small businesses within their neighbourhoods. 

      Therefore, we have started rolling out a new offering called promoted pins on Google Maps, to help businesses stand out during these moments by displaying a prominent, square-shaped pin. In the current situation, business owners  can also highlight specific services such as pickup and delivery, or other unique offerings to make shopping convenient.  We've started rolling out Promoted pins to Smart campaign advertisers with a Google My Business profile and will be fully available in the coming weeks. Until the end of September 2020, businesses will not have to pay for any clicks, calls or sales resulting from Promoted pins.

      Free - Remote Working & Collaboration Tools with G Suite Essentials:

      Remote working and working from home is the new reality, and video conferencing services are the new life line for business continuity. We know that businesses of all sizes today need this capability, and that’s why we have announced the free availability of Google’s premium video meetings service Meet for everyone. And with G Suite essentials, not only do small businesses get pro video conferencing service, we have also included the professional-grade versions of Google Drive, Docs, Sheets, and Slides and made it available for free through 30th September. 

      Unlocking the full value of going digital for Small businesses across India

      We know that small businesses are dealing with multiple challenges, and navigating the digital world can be a daunting experience for many. We are committed to hand hold the small businesses who are embarking on a digital transformation journey and we are in this for the long-run. Under our Digital Unlocked program, we are proud to have supported over 1 million businesses and individuals to gain from our digital skilling program in India. And we will be doubling down on this effort to help businesses across all parts of India to unlock the full value of going digital by not just helping them connect with more customers online and offline, but also master the skills needed to recover and emerge stronger to succeed in this new digital first world.

      Posted by Shalini Girish, Director, India, Google Customer Solutions & Sajith Sivanandan, Business Head - Google Pay and NBU initiatives, India

      Our efforts to support startups through Covid-19

      The last few months have brought sweeping changes and have, perhaps permanently, upended our regular way of doing business. Nowhere is this more felt than in startups, operating with lean teams, finite resources and a lot less cushion for uncertain times such as these.

      Google started its own journey as a startup and in the years since, has worked actively with the startup community across the globe to foster innovation and cross pollination of knowledge, to help put the power of technology to its most impactful use. Google For Startups Accelerator (GFS Accelerator, previously Launchpad Accelerator) has worked with over 60 startups in India, which are oriented towards powering solutions in critical parts of the Indian economy such as healthcare, agriculture and sustainability. 

      Since the Covid-19 outbreak, GFS in India has been contributing actively via 1:1 mentorships and webinar content aimed at startups in the ecosystem. Based on startups’ interest, topics such as Retention, Monetization, Optimization, Design across key areas like Cloud, Android, Digital Marketing have been covered in the last couple of months. Over the last 2 months, over 250 startups have benefitted from these activities in India and there will be many more to come in the months ahead.

      Beyond GFS Accelerator, we continue to support startups via our partner program and mentor network through live Meet series and webinars across topics like fundraising during Covid-19 lockdowns, keeping startup communities engaged online, hosting online events, online founder training, virtual mentorship best practices, remote team tools and so on. 

      To bring this critical know-how to a wider set of startups facing this challenge, Google for Startups has worked with our collaborators across the ecosystem to create Emerging Stronger: Playbook for Startups to face the Covid-19 Challenge. The Playbook is a compilation of practical suggestions for founders to address both, the strategic and the  operational challenges posed by the pandemic. 

      It covers topics such as:
        • Thinking strategically about your startup’s future
        • Managing burn
        • Identifying new sources of revenue
        • Managing teams and productivity while WFH
        • How to help contribute to the fight against Covid-19 - examples of startups that are doing this and how
        • Case studies of startups that have experienced a surge in demand due to the pandemic e.g. on-demand logistics and mental health support

      A robust startup ecosystem will be a key building block in rebuilding the economy in the months ahead. To support and nurture innovations in this new normal, we are expanding the scope of GFS Accelerator to include startups that are not only utilizing cutting edge technology such as AI/ML but are meaningfully helping the world adapt and move forward by solving for the challenges posed by the new landscape ahead of us.   

      GFS Accelerator’s next batch of startups will commence in August 2020, and we invite applications from startups across verticals such as healthtech, edutech, fintech, retail and SaaS to apply here. The last date of applications is 30th June 2020. 

      Posted by Paul Ravindranath G, Program Manager, Google for Startups Accelerator, India

      Finding COVID-19 testing centers in Search, Maps, and Assistant in India

      Many experts agree that widespread testing is a key tool in the fight against COVID-19. That's why we're working with the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and MyGov to help people find local COVID-19 testing centres on Google Search, Assistant, and Maps.

      When making a coronavirus-related search (eg. “coronavirus testing”), people will now see a ‘Testing’ tab on the results page providing a list of nearby testing labs along with key information and guidance needed before using their services. This includes government-mandated requirements such as: 
      • Calling the national or state helplines before heading out to get tested
      • Carrying a doctor’s prescription (referral required)
      • Testing restrictions (tests are limited to certain patients)
      • Information about whether the lab is government- or private-run.

        Search for ‘Covid 19 testing’ to see nearby authorized test labs, along with key recommendations (images are representational)

        On Google Maps, when people search for keywords like “covid 19 testing” or “coronavirus testing” they will see a list of nearby testing labs, with a link to Google Search for the government-mandated requirements.
        Search for ‘Covid 19 testing’ on Maps to see a list of nearby testing labs, with a link to Google Search for testing requirements (image representational)

        While this experience is designed to help people find authorized testing centers near them, it's important to follow the recommended guidelines that help determine testing eligibility before visiting. Tapping the ‘Learn more’ link leads to authoritative information from the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW), Government of India.

        So far we have integrated over 700 testing labs on Search, Assistant, and Maps spanning more than 300 cities, and we continue to work with ICMR as we surface more labs across the country. This experience is available in English and in eight Indian languages -- Hindi, Bengali, Telugu, Tamil, Malayalam, Kannada, Marathi, and Gujarati.

        We hope these new experiences play a part in helping people as well as healthcare workers as we collectively work toward overcoming this pandemic. 

        Posted by Jayant Baliga, Product Manager, Google Maps

        You Will Prevail – A message to the Class of 2020

        Editor’s Note: Right now YouTube is streaming “Dear Class of 2020," a virtual commencement event bringing together inspirational leaders, speakers, celebrities and YouTube Creators to celebrate graduates, their families, and their communities. Note that many of these speeches were recorded before the recent protests in the U.S., and we know many of you might not feel like celebrating right now. In that spirit, YouTube will post all of the commencement addresses in one place so they can be viewed when the time is right. 

        Below is the message Google CEO Sundar Pichai delivered.

        Hello, everyone. And congratulations to the Class of 2020, as well as your parents, your teachers, and everyone who helped you get to this day.

        I never imagined I’d be giving a commencement speech with no live audience … from my backyard. But it’s giving me a much deeper understanding for what our YouTube Creators go through! And I certainly never thought I’d be sharing a virtual stage with a former President ... a First Lady, a Lady Gaga, and a Queen Bey … not to mention BTS. 

        I don’t think this is the graduation ceremony any of you imagined. At a time when you should be celebrating all the knowledge you’ve gained, you may be grieving what you’ve lost: the moves you planned, the jobs you earned, and the experiences you were looking forward to. In bleak moments like these, it can be difficult to find hope.

        So let me skip right to the end and tell you what happens: you will prevail.

        That’s not really the end of the speech, so don’t get too excited.

        The reason I know you’ll prevail is because so many others have done it before you. One hundred years ago, the class of 1920 graduated into the end of a deadly pandemic. Fifty years ago, the class of 1970 graduated in the midst of the Vietnam War. And nearly 20 years ago, the class of 2001 graduated just months before 9/11.

        There are notable examples like this. They had to overcome new challenges, and in all cases they prevailed. The long arc of history tells us we have every reason to be hopeful. 

        So, be hopeful. 

        There’s an interesting trend I’ve noticed: It’s very conventional for every generation to underestimate the potential of the following one. 

        It’s because they don’t realize that the progress of one generation becomes the foundational premise for the next. And it takes a new set of people to come along and realize all the possibilities.

        I grew up without much access to technology. We didn’t get our first telephone til I was 10. I didn’t have regular access to a computer until I came to America for graduate school. And our television, when we finally got one, only had one channel. 

        So imagine how awestruck I am today to be speaking to you on a platform that has millions of channels.

        By contrast, you grew up with computers of all shapes and sizes. The ability to ask a computer anything, anywhere—the very thing I’ve spent my last decade working on—is not amazing to you. That’s OK, it doesn’t make me feel bad, it makes me hopeful! 

        There are probably things about technology that frustrate you and make you impatient. 

        Don’t lose that impatience. It will create the next technology revolution and enable you to build things my generation could never dream of.  

        You may be just as frustrated by my generation's approach to climate change, or education. Be impatient. It will create the progress the world needs. 

        You will make the world better in your own ways. Even if you don’t know exactly how. The important thing is to be open-minded so you can find what you love.  

        For me, it was technology. The more access my family had to technology, the better our lives got. So when I graduated, I knew I wanted to do something to bring technology to as many others as possible.

        At the time, I thought I could achieve this by helping build better semiconductors. I mean, what could be more exciting than that?

        My father spent the equivalent of a year’s salary on my plane ticket to the U.S. so I could attend Stanford. It was my first time ever on a plane. But when I eventually landed in California, things weren’t as I had imagined. America was expensive. A phone call back home was more than $2 a minute, and a backpack cost the same as my dad’s monthly salary in India. 

        And for all the talk about the warm California beaches ... that water was freezing cold!

        On top of all that, I missed my family, my friends, and my girlfriend—now my wife—back in India.


        Sundar as a Stanford graduate student

        A bright spot for me during this time was computing. For the first time in my life, I could use a computer whenever I wanted to. It completely blew my mind.

        And at that same moment, the internet was literally being built all around me. The year I arrived at Stanford was the same year the browser Mosaic was released, which would popularize the world wide web and the internet. 

        The summer I left was the same summer that a graduate student named Sergey Brin met a prospective engineering student named Larry Page. 

        These two moments would profoundly shape the rest of my life. But at the time, I didn’t know it. 

        It took me a while to realize that the internet would be the single best way to make technology accessible to more people. As soon as I did, I changed course and decided to pursue my dreams at Google. 

        Inspired by the wonder that first browser created in me, I led the effort to launch one—called Chrome—in 2009, and drove the effort to help Google develop affordable laptops and phones so that a student growing up, in any neighborhood or village, in any part of the world, could have the same access to information as all of you.

        20141009-Google Edu-Dolores Hidalgo-Mexico-796.jpg

        Primary school students in the city of Dolores Hidalgo in Mexico

        Had I stayed the course in graduate school, I'd probably have a Ph.D. today—which would have made my parents really proud. But I might have missed the opportunity to bring the benefits of technology to so many others. 

        And I certainly wouldn't be standing here speaking to you as Google's CEO. Believe me when I say I saw none of this coming when I first touched down in the state of California 27 years ago. 

        The only thing that got me from here to there—other than luck—was a deep passion for technology, and an open mind. 

        So take the time to find the thing that excites you more than anything else in the world. Not the thing your parents want you to do. Or the thing that all your friends are doing. Or that society expects of you. 

        I know you’re getting a lot of advice today. So let me leave you with mine: 

        Be open … be impatient … be hopeful.

        If you can do that, history will remember the Class of 2020 not for what you lost, but for what you changed. 

        You have the chance to change everything. I am optimistic you will.

        Posted by Sundar Pichai, CEO, Google and Alphabet

        Clarifying Recent App Decisions on Play

        Google Play was designed to provide a safe and secure experience for our consumers while also giving developers the platform and tools they need to build sustainable businesses. Our global policies were designed with that goal in mind. 

        A number of recent app removals received particular attention in India and we wanted to clarify our actions.

        Earlier this week, we removed a video app for a number of technical policy violations. We have an established process of working with developers to help them fix issues and resubmit their apps.  We’ve given this developer some guidance and once they’ve addressed the issue the app can go back up on Play.

        We also recently suspended a number of apps for violating the policy that we don't allow an app that “encourages or incentivizes users into removing or disabling third-party apps or modifying device settings or features unless it is part of a verifiable security service”. This is a longstanding rule designed to ensure a healthy, competitive environment where developers can succeed based upon design and innovation. When apps are allowed to specifically target other apps, it can lead to behavior that we believe is not in the best interest of our community of developers and consumers. We’ve enforced this policy against other apps in many countries consistently in the past - just as we did here.    

        We hope this helps clarify the rationale behind these recent actions. We thank our developers for all the amazing work they do and our consumers for their continued support in helping to create a safe and secure mobile app ecosystem. 

        Posted by Sameer Samat, Vice President, Android and Google Play

        Helping our customers build a ‘Resilient Future’

        As the world mounts a campaign against COVID-19, businesses around the globe are adapting to an evolving ecosystem. Our aim at Google Cloud right now is to support government institutions, communities and corporations as they navigate these challenging times so they can stay connected and get work done. Whether it’s ensuring displaced communities have the ability to acquire essential information, helping companies ramp up their remote working capabilities, or ensuring people have access to critical services and important data – we are committed to serving our customers through the phases of this pandemic.

        Helping businesses connect 
        For years we’ve been delivering enterprise-grade cloud solutions in over 150 countries that leverage Google’s cutting-edge technology. As a trusted partner for solving the most critical business problems, we help companies operate efficiently, modernize for growth, and innovate for the future. 
        Across the world, businesses and users depend on Google Cloud to stay connected and get work done. No matter where they are on their cloud journey, we strive to accelerate every organisation’s ability to transform through data-powered innovation with leading infrastructure, industry solutions and expertise.
        For example, with Google Anthos we have released new capabilities to support businesses develop, deploy and operate applications faster, with more flexibility. Since cloud platforms have become vital for enterprises for cost-benefit-ratio and digital transformation, we expanded Anthos to support a slew of workloads for different cloud environments. This will help enterprise developers develop applications that are unfailing for both on-premise and public cloud environments.
        Similarly, to help offices, corporations and business communities figure out how to accommodate remote workforce during the COVID-19 pandemic, we rolled out BeyondCorp Remote Access. This new cloud-based product allows employees to securely access their company’s internal web applications from any device or any location. With a way to quickly get secure access to browser-based applications we can help employees adapt to new ways of working.
        Last month we made our  premium video meetings product Google Meet free to everyone so they can connect to all their important meetings—from work meetings, to graduation meetings, to wedding meetings, and everything in between. As of April, Meet was hosting 3 billion minutes of video meetings and adding roughly 3 million new users every day. Meet’s day over day growth has surpassed 60% in the last few weeks and the usage has surged by 30 times to what it was in January 2020.  
        How customers are benefiting from cloud solutions
        Today employees of NPCI, the apex organization for retail payments in India have been able to efficiently manage work across remote locations where employees can securely work and collaborate with colleagues, clients and stakeholders. 
        Kochi-based conglomerate Muthoot Group, one of the largest financial services providers in the country has been using G Suite’s collaboration tools to stay connected and carry business as usual during the lockdown period. 
        Popxo, India’s largest community of women online was able to accomplish a smooth transition to Google Cloud and optimise performance with the help of highly efficient tools and the support and collaboration  from teams.  
        Real estate company Rustomjee can access every business application via Google Cloud Platform and continue to communicate as usual not only between themselves but also with customers, vendors and other stakeholders with G Suite. 
        Fluid AI has leveraged our collaboration to spin up custom virtual machines on demand in the cloud for employees and stream it to them in a secure, cost effective way that is monitored and restricts data transfer. This has allowed it to bring higher efficiencies for employees who are working from home than they were at the office – an architecture that looks promising post the crisis.
        Helping Indian companies build for the future
        As Covid19 runs its course, we at Google Cloud are working hard to deliver technology and business solutions to help millions of people stay connected.  We believe today more than ever, we need to collaborate and innovate and build new features to make our tools helpful, secure and safe.

        Karan Bajwa, Managing Director, Google Cloud India 

        Lights, Camera, Beauty: Presenting our first class of NextUp for Beauty Creators!

        In February, we announced our first edition of NextUp for Beauty Creators with L’Oreal Paris. Through this special edition, and our partnership with L’Oréal Paris, a pioneer in the beauty industry, we aim to create a strong beauty creator community that’s truly representative, inclusive, and diverse. 

        YouTube has always been a platform for authenticity and to find content that’s relevant and relatable, and our fashion & beauty creators are using it to redefine what beauty means in today’s world. From haul videos to honest chats, lookbooks to life advice, beauty creators are using their platform to celebrate uniqueness and create collective experiences while providing reliable  tips and information to their community. Their authenticity, stories and passion for their craft has turned them into icons and a source of inspiration for their fans, and these are the voices we seek  to identify and amplify through NextUp. 

        When we opened applications, we received an overwhelming response from hundreds of creators hailing from every corner of India. We’re very proud that the new class of 12 comprises fashion and beauty gurus creating content in multiple languages, and spanning different ages  and beauty sensibilities. A huge thank you to the creator community for their continued passion and enthusiasm, even during times like these!

        Without further ado, introducing the first NextUp Class of 2020 for Beauty Creators! 

        Latika Sehgal: Latika is a singer who stands for wearable fashion and honest beauty
        Himadri Patel: Himadri holds community building at the heart of her beauty content 
        StyleMeUpWithSakshi: Sakshi is a model who is all about body confidence and inclusivity!
        Sarah Sarosh: Sarah is a beauty guru (and a doctor-in-training!) who focuses on Indian skin tones
        Shruti Amin: Shruti’s detailed-oriented beauty reviews have helped her create a loyal audience
        JoyGeeks: Aparna is a wellness guru who emphasises on beauty from the inside out! 
        CoffeeTableTalks Tamil Beauty: Umadevi brings skin positivity and beauty tips to Tamil-speaking audiences
        Meghna Verghese: Meghna is a lifestyle creator with a love for budget beauty
        Angelina Pongener: Angelina is a fashionista who takes style notes from Harajuku, Cosplay and Gaming
        Rachna Jintaa: Rachna is a skincare enthusiast who specially focuses on beauty for middle-aged women 
        Suma Amujuri: Suma is a curly hair expert with her own product line, who creates content in Telugu! 
        Lilmissgurung: Shraddha’s passion for sustainability sets her apart in the beauty & fashion space. 

        So what’s next for these creators?

        As the world adjusts to the new normal, the NextUp Creator Camp is pivoting to an immersive digital experience, with online learning & engagement modules spanning several weeks. Think virtual challenges, video mentorships and online creator & alumni meet-and-greets! The modules will cover YouTube best practices, well-being tips and production techniques to help creators refine their craft. L’Oreal Paris will be covering the business of beauty aspects of the Camp, with exclusive masterclasses by beauty industry specialists, market insight sharing, and networking with brand representatives. 

        Each winner will also receive a voucher worth INR 1,40,000 for production equipment, to continue creating compelling stories for their YouTube community.  

        Excited? So are we! Follow us on Twitter, and on L’Oreal Paris’ YouTube Channel to catch all the updates from this exciting initiative. 

        Posted by Satya Raghavan, Director, YouTube Partnerships, India, & Marc Lefkowitz, Head of YouTube Creator and Artist Development, APAC